I quit my job this week, after months of unhappiness – and you know what I needed on this joyous Friday afternoon? THIS ALBUM. Into it. Over it.’s Standards is everything – Evan Weiss has written it, somehow, just for me. Maybe just for you. That’s how this album feels.
“An aching brain, doesn’t focus quite the same, an aching brain, doesn’t process things the same” – listening to Weiss’s lyrics is like exhaling after holding your breath underwater for a moment too long, your lungs are burning and that first breath back in you take, you can taste the air and everything is a touch brighter, like the world has gone slightly into technicolour.
Standards has a glow to it, a warm feeling that puts you into the firewood heated cabin in the Vermont woods where Weiss holed up to write the 12 tracks with his best friend and collaborator Joshua David Sparks. ‘Your Lasting Image’ was a standout track for me; the slow, just ever so slightly fuzzy layering leaves, a resounding hum in your lungs – you could say I let the music get inside of me – but that is the mark of a good track, it should touch your soul. There are albums that you can walk away from feeling as though a weight has been lifted – this is one of them.
There is something so atrociously relaxing about the way Standards is composed, certain albums have tracks that all blur into one, and it’s a bad thing – this is not one of those albums. Each track flows seamlessly into the next, without losing its own identity, subtle intros and outros on every track bring them together, a notion that is too often overlooked by artists putting together an album.
Do you need something a bit faster? ‘Adult Contempt’ injects a touch of punk into the record, in quite an unexpected moment following on from the dulcet tones of ‘Old Lace & Ivory’. It starts quite fast and hard, but mellows out into a smooth indie-rock vibe that fits well into the rest of the record. ‘Required Reading’ keeps the tempo up, the kind of track you find yourself subconsiously dancing along to on the tube, just enough to get a little head bop without being too outrageous. It’s the track of the album where people will look at you and go ‘I wonder what she’s listening to?’.
Basically, Weiss has done no wrong, and you should definitely listen to this album. Even if you haven’t quit your job this week, I guarantee you will walk away feeling like you’ve had a weight lifted from your shoulders. Any music that can make people a little bit happier, a little bit more relaxed, and a little bit more at one with the world is good with me, and Standards is just that.